Inside the high-tech fortresses of the super-rich

The mega-rich are building houses with security that far eclipses anything seen in The Purge. Including a 2,500-square-foot ballistics-proof house inside the main house, called the "safe core." And a helipad on the roof. And infrared detection of anyone approaching, up to 15 km away. Dystopia now!

Top image: WSJ

Forbes has a pretty hilarious rundown of the insane security features deployed by people whose wealth and paranoia are both limitless. Along with a profile of Al Corbi, whose house that is in the above picture, from a previous Wall Street Journal profile. Some hilarious quotes from the Forbes piece, which is getting picked up everywhere:

[The Corbi family] sleeps easily inside a 2,500-square-foot home within a home: a ballistics-proof panic suite that Corbi refers to as a "safe core."

[Infrared cameras] can pick someone out even from a hiding place, from a kilometer away in the lowest-end models to as much as 15 kilometers away in the premium versions.

And don't forget the smoke. The Corbis have a system that billows out fog screens that range from a harmless smoke meant to disorient intruders to a noisome gas with disabling effects lasting up to 24 hours.

Gilbert, Ariz.-based Creative Home Engineering specializes in a different kind of portal: secret passageways. Started by an ex-Boeing engineer, the company custom-crafts clandestine entrances that double as bookcases or wardrobes or walls.

Also, according to the WSJ piece, "dirty bomb" shelters with their own air purifiers are becoming way more popular, as are secret escape tunnels that lead outside. In general, the market for ludicrously expensive security measures — the word "bunker" comes up a lot — has grown massively in the last five years.

Inside the high-tech fortresses of the super-rich

Of course, the more elaborate the security becomes — and the more of it is controlled from an iPad interface, as so many of these systems are — the easier it probably becomes to hack. [Forbes]